As a beginner knitter or even as a more experienced knitter, it can seem a little overwhelming to know which yarn is best for what. Over the last few weeks, we have published a series of pros and cons on our social media pages. All of this information has now been compiled into a blog post for you all.
- Retains its shape and is resistant to wrinkling.
- Wool is very flexible making it very durable and resistant to wear and tear.
- Self insulating – Perfect to keep you warm in the cold and is also breathable for warmer weather.
- Fire resistant – wool contains moisture in each fibre making it resistant to flames
- Water-resistant – Wool can soak up 20% of it’s weight in moisture before it starts to soak through.
- Perfect for beginners – It is patient and a pleasure to knit with, its elasticity makes it easier to control enabling you to knit with a more even tension.
- Some people are highly sensitive to the feeling of fibre on their skin so can find wool too scratchy for them.
- Wool maintenance – Wool can be very sensitive to heat so can be a little more difficult to wash.
- Tends to be a little more expensive.
- Wool carries Lanolin which is what makes a sheeps coat water-resistant, a small portion of people can be allergic to this making it not suitable for them.
- Cheap and available in a huge range of colours.
- Very durable making it perfect for projects that need an enduring yarn.
- Warm – It may not be as warm as sheep wool but will still keep you cosy on a winters day.
- Has a lower density than natural fibres so is perfect for larger makes without the added weight.
- Hypoallergenic – The synthetic fibres that Acrylic is made from is perfect for people allergic to lanolin.
- Easy to clean – Acrylic is less sensitive than wool and can handle a round in the washing machine without shrinking or shedding.
- Acrylic tends to hold more water than natural wools which may make it less suitable for rainy weather.
- Not suitable for projects exposed to extreme heat like a teapot holder.
- Some find Acrylic is not as soft as natural fibres however Acrylic has come a long way and there are lots of very soft acrylic yarns now available.
- Alpaca wool is seven times stronger than sheep wool. It is so sturdy it is considered the most durable fibre of any mammal in existence.
- The same air pockets that make the wool such a good insulator also makes it extremely lightweight to wear.
- Perfect for sensitive skin – Alpaca is very soft, so much so that it is often mistaken for cashmere.
- Skin allergies are not an issue since it contains no lanolin like sheep wool.
- While alpacas do not produce lanolin, their wool is still highly waterproof. In laboratory testing, alpaca was shown to absorb no water.
- Contains microscopic air pockets making it 3 times warmer than sheep wool, the same air pockets also give outstanding breathability for the summer.
- The fibre of the alpaca can get fluffy and release fine, long, thin hairs that can cause irritation to the mouths or noses of babies.
- Tends to be a little expensive.